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Exam 1 Study Guide

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by: Abby Varona

Exam 1 Study Guide GOV 312L

Abby Varona

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This Study Guide covers the material for Exam 1
Populism in the United States and Texas
Mr. Matthew Rhodes-Purdy
Study Guide
Government 312L
50 ?




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"Yes please! Looking forward to the next set!"
Brady Spinka

Popular in Populism in the United States and Texas

Popular in History

This 14 page Study Guide was uploaded by Abby Varona on Monday February 22, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to GOV 312L at University of Texas at Austin taught by Mr. Matthew Rhodes-Purdy in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 35 views. For similar materials see Populism in the United States and Texas in History at University of Texas at Austin.


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Date Created: 02/22/16
POPULISM IN THE US: SECTION 1 STUDY GUIDE Week 1: Defining populism  What is populism’s genus? Is it: o A type of social coalition, a discourse, a political style, or an attitude?  Social coalition: o Cross class political coalition (usually including better-off groups as well as workers and peasants)  Weird to see workers and business owners working together  Latin America in the 1930’s  Working class (immigrants)  Dominated by people who live on large plantations needing laborers = break through monopoly of political power  Wide array of people banded together to overthrow the elite o Historically rooted: thought to arise from the transition from agricultural to industrial society  Necessary phase from a rural production to an industrial production o Most popular in early literature on Latin American populism; less so for US. Has largely fallen out of favor.  Not very popular in the US: made predictions when populism would disappear, but was never accurate  Too much populism in history o Problems with this definition?  Too broad: includes people who are not typically populist  Political discourse o Emphasis on Manichaeism (evil elite vs. good people)  Tendency to divide everything into black and white (w/ no grey area in b/w)  Dividing society into 2 groups: the elite and the people  Empty – signifier = definitions vary a lot o Popular now: leadership view of populism  Latin America o Benefits: flexible, can encompass right and left wing populism  Right-wing: middle-class punching both up and down (Trump) o Problems with this definition?  A little too broad: includes people who are not typically populist  Political style o Charismatic, unmediated relationship between leader and followers  Eva Peron  Unmediated – no institutions b/w the leader and the people: direct, personal connection o Bombastic rhetoric, lots of religious imagery o Popular in Latin American studies, less so in US (why?)  Unsuccessful (ultimately): get elected = eventually build a party; hard to pin them down and vote them out  But works well in Latin America – top down phenomena  Doesn’t work in the US/Europe = don’t have leaders on the same scale as Peron  Exclude movement that should belong o Problems with this definition  Moves away from Latin America  definition falls apart  Class definition: Populism as attitude o Attitude has three components: value, belief, and cognition  Value – democracy is best  Belief – in a democracy, the people rule  Cognition – in political system X, the people do not appear to rule; democracy has been betrayed o No need to know the details of the psychological terms, but know what the value, belief, and cognition that compose the populist attitude are o Populism as political strategy: when leaders attempt to encourage the adoption of populist attitude  Attitude that arises due to the contradiction b/w cognition, and values, and beliefs  Class argument: o Why is populism so prevalent in the US?  Conflict between democratic political culture and liberal institutions  Mismatch institutions and culture o Institutions: shaped by liberalism, protect minorities, prevent “tyranny of the majority” o Culture: egalitarian, democratic, occasionally hostile to minorities (e.g. racism) Week 2: The civic religion: democratic republicanism and political culture  Definition and origins of the civic religion o Defined as a belief in political egalitarianism (belief that the common people can govern themselves, no need for an aristocracy to rule)  Egalitarianism – no formal class system, believe in equality of opportunity o This is a brief definition; many of the readings deal at length with this idea, esp. Kazin. You should understand this thoroughly.  The Civil Religion – value and beliefs; not a supernatural belief  Kazin emphasizes the idea of Producerism as the core of political ethic: group of people who aren’t contributing to social welfare/government  Democratic Republicanism: don’t believe that the people are incapable of ruling themselves o Terms:  Liberal = limited government  Conservative = some people want to preserve whatever exists  Democratic Republican = fused at one point  belief in popular rule  Origins of the CR o The Founding of the US – colonization: colonial ancestor majority  religious intentions different = came here to establish their own churches/found societies  A New nation with no existing class structure  Cheap soil, the yeoman farmer ideal – someone who owns enough land to be moderately productive on = people doing well while owning their own land  Europe: peasants, sharecroppers  Wage labor = dodgy: shameful = dependent on your employer; just slightly above slaves o Don’t let them vote: so dependent on others that they can be easily swayed  Benign neglect by the British empire  Britain vs. France: 100 Years’ War o Britain: no time or resources to worry about the colonies to keep France in check o Only meddle bc they need money  Go out and look for revenue  Got a taste for self-rule  You should understand and able to explain how each of these factors contributed to the development of US Political culture o The legacy of the revolution  The elite/mass alliance over British taxation and during revolution leads the masses to believe in their equal worth and dignity, right to rule themselves  Order: “upper” class = economic elite: maintain their political power  Reform: shoemakers, ropemakers, blacksmiths and the Yeoman Farmer: want more political influence, democracy, debt relief o Breaks because of taxation  Pro-tax: King George  Anti-tax: financier, merchants, Yeoman Farmer, blacksmiths  Once taxes are gone: those that moved want to go back to the status quo o The radicals don’t want to go back: had a taste of political power o Leads to an egalitarian (suspicious of elites and elitism, belief in the dignity of the common people) and democratic (right of the people to rule and participate extensively in politics)  New Nation – establish new societies = US: tabular rasa (blank slate = no pre-established hierarchy)  Doesn’t extend to anyone who is not a white man  Egalitarian – no formal class distinctions, suspicion of the elites  Democratic: no need for a “ruling class,” the people can rule themselves  We did fine under Great Britain for along time o Remember that many groups are left out of the egalitarian political culture:  African Americans, women, Native Americans, the very poor (wage laborers) WEEK 3: Liberalism; Jeffersonian and Jacksonian democracy Liberalism of US institutions o Basic ideas  Protection of individual rights  No one will act against their own interest: everyone acts towards their own interest  Problem: best interest is controversial = line has to be drawn so one’s interest doesn’t interfere with another  Solution: government there to insure that no one infringes on anyone else’s rights (only job = minimal)  Government = necessary evil o Can turn tyrannical o Solution: limits  Worried about property: right to dispose of one’s property the way one sees fit  Limits on government and checks & balances  The Paper Tiger  Design to have limits on each other: 3 branches and checks and balances  Purpose: all branches are protected by having power over one another to keep each other checked  Fear of the masses/suspicion of democracy/preference for rule by “natural aristocracy” of wealthy and educated. (tyrannical majorities)  Liberals vs. democrats  Liberalism skeptical of democracy; embrace other types of government; populists = value democracy o Liberals: some idea of holding the popular vote accountable  Afraid of majority rule; majorities will gang up on the minorities  Worried about the poor coming for their property  Government is a hybrid b/w 2 ideologies o Embrace the idea of a natural ruling class: Alexander Hamilton  Know how these things relate to one another o Liberalism in practice: US institutions  The Electoral College – changed drastically bc of changes in the state level  Article II, Section 1; how electors get appointed = left to the states  Popular Vote – the people  Keep distance b/w votes and office holders  Originally: farmer = only had to elect 2 people = choose the house rep and state legislators  SL: go on to the elect the President o Supposed to stay out of it and let the leaders do the choosing  The Senate – House of the Property Holders  House – directly tied to the people = constantly being re- elected; taxes only allowed to come up in the House of Reps  Senators appointed by the state legislators (at the time of the founding) o Want the responsible and educated to have a check on the House o 6 year terms = much more time in b/w; sit and resist public opinion o selection = more elite o liberalism in action  The courts: appointed by the President, approved by the Senate (elitists)  Term: lifetime = completely free to make decisions however they feel  Know how liberalism shapes each of these institutions  Big divide b/w Democrats and Liberals o Democrats: elected officials should bow to the people o Liberals: want elites to make the decisions, only want common people to select among the members of the elite Jeffersonian democracy  Jefferson vs. Hamilton: know that Jefferson won the culture, but Hamilton won the institutions o Historical Review: Federalists and Antifederalists  Hamilton = liberal view (Federalist Party)  Washington  Liberals = who should rule? Keep the people away from power o Hamilton = big believer in natural monarchy  Credit available (modernize the economy) = businesses can expand o Economic policy can be complicated  Antifederalists = Democratic=Republican party  Jefferson was in France at the beginning  couldn’t really influences from afar  Agrarian = believe in the heart of the US lies in the countryside  Supporters of States’ Rights = state governments are closer to the people  Basis of power = South and Western frontier vs. Federalists = Northeastern  Radicals of the Revolutionary War: Patrick Henry  Form Federalist and Anti-Federalist (later democratic republican) parties o See above  Major issues that galvanize the DRs o The Bank of the US  Hamilton = establish the US as a modern country  Control trade = international trade  Establishes governments’ credibility  A lot of people held notes and loans, foreign countries and states would not want to destroy the establishment = nullify debt  Jefferson = debt means dependence  control  Concerned that excessive credit = led to the dependence of the common people on the banking system  Constitution: Doesn’t explicitly allow the national bank but the bank is implemented through the necessary and proper clause o Alien and Sedition acts  Alien Acts  Increase the amount of time a resident has to live in the US (5-14 years)  Government could deport any desirable aliens o Most self-deported  Sedition Acts  Federal offence to slander or malign the government o Shut down a lot of the DR newspapers (main campaign strategies)  Federalist counter attack o You should know and be able to explain why these issues were so troubling to the DRs, and why the liberal, modernizing Federalists supported them  Immigrants supported Jefferson  DR response: o Organization of the DR faction into the first mass party o Role of DR clubs (like the Tammany societies)  Tammany Hall  Start of mass political parties  Mass meetings of who to vote/where to vote  Completely destroy the Federalist Party o Starts at the local level: state legislators o Allows the ntn. movement to start coordinating  Cellular networks – easy to coordinate = start acting like a political party  Eventual victory for Jefferson after Adams leaves  Doesn’t recharter the national bank  Major events between Jefferson and Jackson: o Second bank of the US: Madison  Panic of 1819 = Bank’s bad response  Popular opinion goes against the bank  Jackson leads the charge against the bank st o End of the 1 party system: beginning of Democrats and Whigs  Collapse of the Federalist Party – ratification of the Constitution and friendliness to Britain  DR party – only major party in town  House of Reps chooses the President  Populism = betrayed: someone who gets elected doesn’t get to act in office = splits the party o Jackson = head of the Democrat Party o Clay = Whigs = position of old Federalist Party o Need to know/be able to explain why these are important and what they are  Democratizing reforms under Jackson and the Jacksonian movement o Embodiment of Populism = Jackson  Elites are not trustworthy o Electoral college reform  Jackson was elected = all but one state consult the people for the presidency  the popular vote for Electoral College Electors  Property requirements = high barriers to voting for anyone who is not wealthy or lives in the central area (1800) o Suffrage restriction changes  Full white man suffrage, tax requirements (more applicable)  Embodies the Democratic superior  Jackson: the first true populist o Understand why Jefferson is not considered a populist  Populism – restore the system to pure roots  Jefferson – no roots yet  Class definition – populism being an attitude  Never really acts upon the attitude of bashing the elite (slaveholder  part of it) o Jackson’s legacies  True mass party organizations: stump speeches = goes out and talks to people  Creates a campaign bureaucracy  Combative political style – earthy (Trump)  Disregard of minority rights  Trail of Tears o “Courts have made their decision, let us see how they enforce it.”  Jackson didn’t agree with the Courts, but didn’t say anything about it bc his supporters didn’t like Indians WEEK 4: The people’s party  From Jackson to the Civil war o Know and be able to explain why populism became less relevant during this period  Success of Jacksonian democracy – when Jackson leaves office, highest number of voters ever  Westward expansion: Manifest Destiny  country growing, unifies people (pride in the US)  Slavery and the civil war – splits the Whigs  Balance of power b/w slave states and free states on the national level  Splits the Whig Party to the point of collapse o Republican Party takes in the Whig ideals  Lincoln runs and wins the Presidency, South leaves the US  Social and economic changes that set the stage for the civil war o Population growth in the Western states  Texas Independence kicks off Westward Expansion  US Pride = expand from coast to coast  Oregon Country = US wanted to go all the way to Alaska  49 Parallel = mid 1840’s: Compromise o can’t fight a war with Great Britain  Annexation of TX  Mexican-American War  US takes a large portion of Mexico’s territory  Drives the Populist debate off the map and brings in US pride: now possess a common identity = intense pride driven mostly from politics: expand this government as much as we can (East  West expansion) o Development of commercial agriculture  Debt (Social and Economic Change after the Civil War)  Major population growth – people can claim the Yeoman Farmer ideal in the West  Mortgages in the West – Yeoman Ideal is dying o The Rise of Commercial Agriculture  No longer self-producing = specialize in growing 1 crop, sell the crop to buy whatever they need o Need money to pay for tools, borrow $ from banks  Crop liens in the South o Bank takes a big share of crops to compensate for the $ they borrowed  Importance of Railroads and Grain elevators  Farmers are dependent on the RR  Only one RR they could choose from = monopoly  Farmers have to ship out their goods, RR know this  make their prices extremely expensive  Grain elevators – store grain to ship out  upcharge o Typically owned by the RR  Currency issues  Dollar worth more than other currencies  Triples in value = buy more wheat  Inflation = dollar buys more and more goods as time goes on o Price of our goods is higher in other countries  Debt o Deflation = generally good = consumer  buy more stuff  Good for people who lend, bad for people who borrow  Borrow enough money to buy 100 acres, pay back enough money to buy 300 acres  worth a lot more than the money they borrowed o Major cry of the People’s Party  RR is a natural monopoly – inefficient to create competition o Enemies in the Populist eyes: banks and industrial monopolist  The People’s party o The grange movement – still around in the MW  Earliest one of the social movements  Government sponsored, under Andrew Johnson (ironic)  Starts as an attempt to re-order the South after the Civil War  Send agents out to agriculture areas to educate the Southern farmers on farming techniques  Movement eventually moved to the West  Pay people to become educators  Starts off A-political  not involved w/ politics  Eventually expands  Get grangers to come together, make bulk orders: good thing  not dealing w/ monopoly pricing  Allow people to buy goods at a reasonable time  Works well for a while until it collapses  Influences them to attack the RR and grain elevators – had to create a community to overthrow them; only way to properly attack = get involved with politics  Some success: Granger Laws – price regulations on RR and GE  Heavily involved with prohibition  Women’s suffrage  Use gender quotas  Political reform o Eventually supplanted by another org. o The farmer’s alliance: true political movement  Transition form not populist to Populist  Starts in 1800  1,000 local chapters: how angry people were = org. expanded so quickly  Started in the South to attack the crop lien system  Big presence of free African Americans = still heavily controversial = should we allow this?  RR issue – make these companies work for the common good  People do not own the RR, the RR will own us o Want to own the RR through the federal government  Federal version of the Grange  More supportive of the Prohibition  Not Partisan  Eventually form their own party o Understand what these movements were, how they got started, and why the Grange led to the FA and then the People’s party o Understand how the following helped radicalize the farmer’s movement:  Panic of 1873 – serious economic downturn  People lost their farms  increased economic pressure on western and southern farmers  Overinvestment in mortgages and RR  Bank failure cascade in Europe o Downturn in prices o RR in trouble = investing in lines  No more easy credit: hard for farmers who found some success to find investors and sell their crops  Government bails out the RR, but not the common folk: who’s side is the government on?  McKinley Tariff – massive increase in tariff duties (tax applied to imported goods); encourage domestic inventory  domestic goods = more affordable  Good for factory owners = people more willing to buy their goods  Farmers not okay w/ it: raising prices on you = buy the $10 plow vs. $20 plow from the US o Tariff increase prices: stuck paying $20 o Britain not cool with this = huge economic failure: tariff on US wheat  Buy our wheat from someone else  Tariff smother the farmers of the S and W and benefits those in the N and R  Result = the Farmer’s Alliance  Panic of 1893 – major event  Started in Argentina = affects the world  System not working with the farmer o The People’s party  Know a little about the individuals mentioned in lecture  James Weaver of Iowa = Presidential Candidate, pushes currency issue  Mary Elizabeth Lease = inspiration to Dorothy, prohibitionist, fought for women’s suffrage, build bridges b/w the farmers and working class (encourage workers to support the party)  Robert Lee Watson (Southern) = transcend racial differences o Doesn’t really succeed to bringing African Americans: didn’t take issues seriously (Jim Crow, etc.)  William Jennings Bryan = candidate they support in later elections = never part of this party, only gain support bc they agree with his policies; Democrat  Liberty Bell = Symbol  Understand the demands (read the Omaha Platform Carefully)  Electoral fortunes  People have the final say on policy  Direct election of senators  Australian Ballot: all parties put on one ballot o Party Ballot = easy to tell who you voted for = easy for someone to buy your vote  corrupt WEEK 5: Wrapping up section one  Why the People’s Party failed o Liberal institutions (especially electoral systems) o Internal conflict within the party  Immigrants and native-born citizens  Race  Urban/rural o The silver issue  Protect farmers from debt and monopoly businesses, claiming American Democracy = bring power back to the people (heart of the Populist Movement)  Strength in the Mid-West: Nevada, Colorado, Idaho = silver  dooms the People’s Party to failure  Legacies o Political reform o Economic reform o Cooptation by the Progressives and New Deal Democrats  The future of populism in the US We will review the readings in class on Tuesday. Good luck! 1892: 1. People’s Party a. Do very well in the beginning b. Panic of 1893 – wave of foreclosures c. Throw its support to William Jennings Bryant (not part of their party – Democrat) d. 1892 – ran their own party, but went ahead and threw their support to Bryant (silver) i. Disaster  huge defeat: marks the end of the third party system ii. 4 party system – defined by the dominance of the Republican Party iii. Marks the brief end of the Democratic party at the relevance of the national stage e. Collapse – never really a relevant political party after this disaster i. Crashes headlong against the liberalism of the US political system 1. Electoral system – small parties have a hard time breaking in a. Rare to have more than two parties hold a seat in the legislature b. System designed to create big, fairly moderate political parties i. Hard for third parties to gain power ii. Spike their popularity  hard to translate that popular appeal to seats then to a victory for presidency ii. Big attempt to build a true Populist alliance  get all the people who’s voices aren’t being heard into a single movement 1. A lot of internal conflicts: immigrants and native-born citizens nd a. Northern part: 2 generation immigrants that are farmers i. Distrust of people who are not native born 2. Views on Prohibition – less popular with new generation immigrants  comfortable with alcohol a. People’s party doesn’t really address this issue because of the internal conflicts 3. Tension over the issues of race a. Mixed feelings towards the inclusion of African Americans i. Don’t worry about your specific issues (ex. Jim Crow)  join us and we’ll only focus on the economic issues and deal with yours later 4. Need to form alliances with major parties depending on the region a. Southern white who wants to tie with the People’s Party, typically Democratic because of lingering antagonisms over the Civil War 5. Urban Rural a. Pinkerton Agency (Omaha Platform) – national, private detection agency  strike breaking i. Olive Branch to the newly arising labor movement in the industrial areas ii. Primarily agrarian movement f. Gloss over their internal issues/conflicts  not very effective i. Embrace Prohibition g. Strategy – focus on one big issue  create unity among other factions i. Issue of free silver 1. Free coinage of silver: go to a mint, hand them a bar of silver, US treasury department will stamp silver (coins made on demand) 2. Drastically increase the money supply a. Finite amount of gold = finite amount of money and supply 3. Increase the amount of money in circulation a. Value goes down ii. Create Inflation – generate an inflation cycle 1. Inflation is beneficial for people who owe money a. Money you end up paying back is worth less than the money you borrowed during the inflation period i. Value doesn’t go down, but the amount you can buy is more iii. Loses its ability completely to appeal to the working class 1. Farmers: just have bills to pay – buy food, buy clothing, etc. a. Inflation is really bad: everything goes up iv. Intensifies agrarian culture 1. Working class does not flock to the People’s Party 2. Win the silver states 3. Issue alienates the industrial working class h. A lot of grievances and specific policies survives i. First major movement to make a case that the federal government of the US has the responsibility to help people in economic trouble 1. Idea lives on ii. Political ideas 1. Trying to modify the US political system to be less liberal and more democratic 2. Progressive movement – bipartisan but associated with the Republican Party a. Teddy b. Pro-Reform movement: eliminate corruption and break up monopolies i. Differ: political tone and strategy ii. Reassertion that the national elite should be in charge, no need for a mass movement (People’s Party) iii. Populism taking a turn to the right 2. Readings a. Formisano and Kazin and Hofstader: two faces of Populism i. Formisano – light side and dark side of Populism 1. Writing to respond to a wave of scholarship in history 2. Very antagonistic: populism movements are primarily about racism (historic) 3. Two elements to populism: a. Politically egalitarian element (light side) b. Xenophobic racism (dark side) 4. Impulse to bring power back to the people ii. Kazin – neutrality, doesn’t really make judgements of certain elements being good or bad 1. Two defining elements of populism: a. Economic – The Producer Ethic (economic basis of populism) i. Society is divided between makers and takers b. Cultural – Protestant Evangelicalism in the US i. Protects the people’s moral being from iii. Conflicts b/w two sides of populism TEST: 25 MC questions: definitions, big arguments, focuses on lecture but some on reading 10 Short Answer questions, choose 5: explain arguments and big ideas, focus on main readings


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